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Publication numberUS7944413 B2
Publication typeGrant
Application numberUS 12/331,545
Publication dateMay 17, 2011
Filing dateDec 10, 2008
Priority dateFeb 28, 2005
Also published asEP1854088A1, EP1854088A4, US7482187, US20070075944, US20090096774, WO2006092900A1
Publication number12331545, 331545, US 7944413 B2, US 7944413B2, US-B2-7944413, US7944413 B2, US7944413B2
InventorsMakoto Shibusawa
Original AssigneeToshiba Matsushita Display Technology Co., Ltd.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Organic EL display
US 7944413 B2
Abstract
An organic EL display includes plural pixels, each including a drive control element, an organic EL element and an output control switch. The drive control element includes a control terminal, a first terminal connected to a first power supply terminal, and a second terminal outputting a current with a magnitude corresponding to a voltage between the control terminal and the first terminal. The organic EL element includes a first electrode, a second electrode connected to a second power supply terminal, and an active layer interposed between the first and second electrodes. The output control switch is connected between the second terminal and the first electrode. In a part of the pixels, a conductive path electrically connecting the first electrode to the first power supply terminal is broken at a portion which connects the output control switch to the first electrode.
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Claims(21)
1. An organic EL display comprising an insulating substrate, pixels arranged in a matrix form on the insulating substrate, and video signal lines arranged correspondently with columns which the pixels form, wherein each of the pixels comprises:
a drive control element which includes a control terminal, a first terminal connected to a first power supply terminal, and a second terminal outputting a current with a magnitude corresponding to a voltage between the control terminal and the first terminal;
an organic EL element which includes a first electrode, a second electrode connected to a second power supply terminal, and an active layer interposed between the first and second electrodes;
an output control switch which is connected between the second terminal and the first electrode;
a switch group which switches an electrical connection between first and second states, the first state being a state that the second terminal, the video signal line, and the control terminal are electrically connected to one another, and the second state being a state that the second terminal, the video signal line, and the control terminal are electrically disconnected from one another; and
a capacitor which is connected to the control terminal,
wherein a first conductive path electrically connecting the first electrode to the first power supply terminal and a second conductive path electrically connecting the second terminal to the video signal line are broken in a part of the pixels.
2. The display according to claim 1, wherein the switch group includes a video signal supply control switch connected to the video signal line, and a diode-connecting switch connected to the control terminal, and
wherein, in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, a part of the second conductive path connecting the video signal supply control switch to the video signal line is broken, and a part of the first conductive path connecting the output control switch to the first electrode is broken.
3. The display according to claim 1, wherein the switch group includes video signal supply control switches connected in series to the video signal line, and a diode-connecting switch connected to the control terminal, and
wherein, in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, a part of the second conductive path connecting one of the video signal supply control switches to the video signal line is broken, and a part of the first conductive path connecting the output control switch to the first electrode is broken.
4. The display according to claim 1, wherein the switch group includes video signal supply control switches connected in series to the video signal line, and a diode-connecting switch connected to the control terminal, and
wherein, in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, a part of the second conductive path connecting the video signal supply control switches to each other is broken, and a part of the first conductive path connecting the output control switch to the first electrode is broken.
5. The display according to claim 1, wherein the first and second conductive paths include first and second polysilicon portions, respectively, and
wherein, in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, the first and second polysilicon portions are broken.
6. An organic EL display comprising:
plural pixels, each of the pixels comprising,
a drive control element which includes a control terminal, a first terminal connected to a first power supply terminal, and a second terminal outputting a current with a magnitude corresponding to a voltage between the control terminal and the first terminal,
an organic EL element which includes a first electrode, a second electrode connected to a second power supply terminal, and an active layer interposed between the first and second electrodes, and
an output control switch which is connected between the second terminal and the first electrode,
wherein in a part of the pixels, a first conductive path electrically connecting the first electrode to the first power supply terminal is broken at a portion which connects the output control switch to the first electrode.
7. The display according to claim 6, further comprising video signal lines to which the pixels are electrically connected,
wherein each of the pixels further comprises a switch group which switches an electrical connection between first and second states, the first state being a state that the second terminal, the video signal line, and the control terminal are electrically connected to one another, and the second state being a state that the second terminal, the video signal line, and the control terminal are electrically disconnected from one another, and
wherein in the pixel in which the first conductive path is broken, a second conductive path electrically connecting the second terminal to the video signal line is further broken.
8. The display according to claim 7, wherein the switch group includes a video signal supply control switch connected to the video signal line, and a diode-connecting switch connected to the control terminal, and
wherein in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, a part of the second conductive path connecting the video signal supply control switch to the video signal line is broken.
9. The display according to claim 7, wherein the switch group includes video signal supply control switches connected in series to the video signal line, and a diode-connecting switch connected to the control terminal, and
wherein in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, a part of the first conductive path connecting one of the video signal supply control switches to the video signal line is broken, and a part of the second conductive path connecting the output control switch to the first electrode is broken.
10. The display according to claim 7, wherein the switch group includes video signal supply control switches connected in series to the video signal line, and a diode-connecting switch connected to the control terminal, and
wherein in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, a part of the first conductive path connecting the video signal supply control switches to each other is broken, and a part of the second conductive path connecting the output control switch to the first electrode is broken.
11. The display according to claim 7, wherein the first and second conductive paths include first and second polysilicon portions, respectively, and
wherein in the pixel in which the first and second conductive paths are broken, the first and second polysilicon portions are broken.
12. An organic EL display comprising:
an insulating substrate;
video signal lines each extending in a first direction above the insulating substrate;
power supply lines each extending in the first direction above the insulating substrate, the power supply lines and the video signal lines being arranges in a second direction crossing the first direction;
first scan signal lines each extending in the second direction above the insulating substrate and arranged in the first direction; and
pixels arranged above the insulating substrate and each including
a drive control element including a control terminal, a first terminal and a second terminal, the first terminal being connected to the power supply line, the second terminal outputting a current with a magnitude corresponding to a voltage between the control terminal and the first terminal,
an organic EL element including a first electrode, a second electrode and an active layer, the second electrode being connected to a power supply terminal, the active layer being interposed between the first and second electrodes, and
a first transistor connected between the second terminal and the first electrode, the first transistor including a part of the first scan signal line as a gate,
wherein in a part of the pixels, a first conductive path electrically connecting the first electrode to the power supply line is broken at a portion which connects the first transistor to the first electrode.
13. The display according to claim 12, further comprising second scan signal lines each extending in the second direction above the insulating substrate and arranged in the first direction, each of the second scan signal lines including a protruding portion protruding in the first direction,
wherein each of the pixels further includes a second transistor connected to the video signal line and having the protruding portion as a gate.
14. The display according to claim 12, wherein the first conductive path includes a first polysilicon portion extending in the first direction, and wherein in the pixel in which the first conductive path is broken, a part of the first polysilicon portion is broken.
15. The display according to claim 14, further comprising second scan signal lines each extending above the insulating substrate in the second direction and arranged in the first direction, each of the second scan signal lines intersecting the first polysilicon portion,
wherein each of the pixels further includes a third transistor connected to the control terminal, the third transistor including parts of the second scan signal line and the first polysilicon portion facing each other.
16. The display according to claim 12, wherein each of the pixels further includes a capacitor having third and fourth electrodes facing each other, and wherein the drive control element includes a transistor having a portion of the third electrode as a gate.
17. The display according to claim 12, wherein the drive control element includes a transistor having a second polysilicon portion, the second polysilicon portion extending in the second direction.
18. An organic EL display comprising:
an insulating substrate;
video signal lines each extending in a first direction above the insulating substrate;
power supply lines each extending in the first direction above the insulating substrate, the power supply lines and the video signal lines being arranged in a second direction crossing the first direction;
first scan signal lines each extending in the second direction above the insulating substrate and arranged in the first direction; and
pixels arranged above the insulating substrate and each including,
an organic EL element including a first electrode, a second electrode and an active layer, the active layer being interposed between the first and second electrodes,
a capacitor including third and fourth electrodes facing each other,
a first polysilicon portion including a first part, a second part, and a third part between the first and second parts, the first polysilicon portion intersecting the first scan signal line at the third part and being electrically connected to the first electrode at the first part, and
a second polysilicon portion including a fourth part, a fifth part, and a sixth part between the fourth and fifth parts, the second polysilicon portion intersecting the third electrode at the sixth part and being electrically connected to the power supply line and the second part at the fourth and fifth parts, respectively,
wherein in a part of the pixels, a first polysilicon portion is broken at the first part.
19. The display according to claim 18, further comprising second scan signal lines each extending in the second direction above the insulating substrate and arranged in the first direction, each of the second scan signal lines including a protruding portion protruding in the first direction,
wherein the first polysilicon portion further includes a seventy part and an eighth part between the second and seventh parts, the first polysilicon portion being electrically connected to the video signal line at the seventh part and intersecting the protruding portion at the eighth part.
20. The display according to claim 19, wherein in the pixel in which the first polysilicon portion is broken at the first part, the first polysilicon portion is further broken at the seventh part.
21. The display according to claim 18, further comprising second scan signal lines each extending in the second direction above the insulating substrate and arranged in the first direction,
wherein the first polysilicon portion further includes a ninth part and a tenth part between the second and ninth parts, the first polysilicon portion being electrically connected to the fourth electrode at the ninth part and intersecting the second scan signal line at the tenth part.
Description
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is a division of and claims the benefit of priority under 35 U.S.C. 120 from U.S. Ser. No. 11/555,302 filed Nov. 1, 2006, which is a Continuation Application of PCT Application No. PCT/JP2005/023197 filed Dec. 13, 2005, which was published under PCT Article 21(2) in Japanese which claims the benefit of priority under 35 U.S.C. 119 from Japanese Patent Application No. 2005-053424 filed Feb. 28, 2005, the entire contents of each of which are incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a display.

2. Description of the Related Art

In an organic electroluminescent (EL) display, image quality deterioration such as luminance unevenness occurs if a drive current varies. Therefore, when an active matrix driving method is used in this display, the characteristics of a drive control element for controlling the magnitude of the drive current must be substantially the same between pixels. In this display, however, the drive control element is normally formed on an insulator such as a glass substrate, so the characteristics of the element easily vary.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,373,454 describes an organic EL display using a current mirror circuit in a pixel. This pixel includes an n-channel field-effect transistor (FET) as the drive control element, an organic EL element, a capacitor, an output control switch, a video signal supply control switch, and a diode-connecting switch.

The source of the drive control element is connected to a first power supply line at a low electric potential, and the capacitor is connected between the gate of the drive control element and the first power supply line. The output control switch is connected between the drain of the drive control element and the cathode of the organic EL element, and the anode of the organic EL element is connected to a second power supply line at a higher electric potential. The video signal supply control switch is connected between the drain of the drive control element and a video signal line, and the diode-connecting switch is connected between the drain and gate of the drive control element.

During a write period, the pixel including the current mirror circuit is supplied with a current signal Isig as a video signal. During a hold period following the write period, a drive current having a magnitude substantially equal to that of the electric current Isig flows between the drain and source of the drive control element. This makes it possible to eliminate the influence of not only a threshold value Vth but also the mobility, dimensions, and the like of the drive control element on the drive current.

In an active matrix display, some pixels are sometimes viewed as luminous dots or dark dots owing to disconnections or short circuits in the pixel circuit. Also, in an active matrix display, pixel columns or rows are sometimes viewed as luminous lines or dark lines owing to disconnections of scan signal lines or video signal lines.

When achieving the present invention, the present inventor has found that in an active matrix display in which a current signal is written as a video signal in a pixel circuit, a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail forms in an image in addition to the line- or dot-like luminance unevenness described above.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the present invention to prevent the formation of a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail in an image on an active matrix display in which a current signal is written as a video signal in a pixel circuit.

According to an aspect of the present invention, there is provided an organic EL display comprising, pixels, each of the pixels comprising a drive control element which includes a control terminal, a first terminal connected to a first power supply terminal, and a second terminal outputting a current with a magnitude corresponding to a voltage between the control terminal and the first terminal, an organic EL element which includes a first electrode, a second electrode connected to a second power supply terminal, and an active layer interposed between the first and second electrodes, and an output control switch which is connected between the second terminal and the first electrode, wherein in a part of the pixels, a first conductive path electrically connecting the first electrode to the first power supply terminal is broken at a portion which connects the output control switch to the first electrode.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWING

FIG. 1 is a plan view schematically showing a display according to an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a sectional view schematically showing an example of a structure usable as the display shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a plan view schematically showing an example of a structure usable as a pixel of the display shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a plan view schematically showing a structure after the pixel shown in FIG. 3 is repaired;

FIG. 5 is an equivalent circuit diagram of a pixel included in a display according to a modification;

FIG. 6 is a plan view schematically showing an example of a structure usable as the pixel of the display according to the modification;

FIG. 7 is a plan view schematically showing an example of a structure after the pixel shown in FIG. 6 is repaired; and

FIG. 8 is a plan view schematically showing another example of the structure after the pixel shown in FIG. 6 is repaired.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Embodiments of the present invention will be described in detail below with reference to the accompanying drawings. Note that the same reference numerals in the drawings denote constituent elements which achieve the same or similar functions, and a repetitive explanation thereof will be omitted.

FIG. 1 is a plan view schematically showing a display according to an embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 2 is a sectional view schematically showing an example of a structure usable as the display shown in FIG. 1. FIG. 3 is a plan view schematically showing an example of a structure usable as a pixel of the display shown in FIG. 1. Note that in FIG. 2, the display is drawn such that the display surface, i.e., the front surface or light-emitting surface faces downwardly, and the back surface faces upwardly. Note also that FIG. 3 illustrates the structure of the pixel viewed from the display surface side.

This display is a bottom emission organic EL display using an active matrix driving method. The display includes an insulating substrate SUB such as a glass substrate.

On the substrate SUB, as shown in FIG. 2, an SiNx layer and SiOx layer, for example, are sequentially stacked as an undercoat layer UC.

On the undercoat layer UC, semiconductor layers SC such as polysilicon layers in each of which a channel, source and drain are formed, a gate insulator GI formed by using, e.g., tetraethyl orthosilicate (TEOS), and gates G made of, e.g., MoW are sequentially stacked to form top-gate type TFTs. In this embodiment, these TFTs are p-channel TFTs and used as a drive control element DR and switches SW1 to SW3 included in each pixel PX shown in FIGS. 1 to 3.

On the gate insulator GI, scan signal lines SL1 and SL2 shown in FIG. 1 and electrodes E1 shown in FIGS. 1 to 3 are further formed. The scan signal lines SL1 and SL2 and the electrodes E1 can be formed in the same step as the gates G.

As shown in FIG. 1, the scan signal lines SL1 and SL2 run in the row direction (X direction) of the pixels PX, and are alternately arranged in the column direction (Y direction) of the pixels PX. The scan signal lines SL1 and SL2 are connected to a scan signal line driver YDR.

The electrodes E1 are connected to the gates G of the drive control elements DR. Each electrode E1 is used as one electrode of a capacitor C (to be described later).

The gate insulator GI, gates G, scan signal lines SL1 and SL2, and electrodes E1 are covered with an interlayer dielectric film II shown in FIG. 2. The interlayer dielectric film II is made of, e.g., an SiOx film formed by plasma CVD. That portions of the interlayer dielectric film II which are positioned on the electrodes E1 are used as dielectric layers of the capacitors C.

On the interlayer dielectric film II, source electrodes SE and drain electrodes DE shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, video signal lines DL and power supply lines PSL shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, and electrodes E2 shown in FIG. 3 are arranged. These components can be formed in the same step, and have, e.g., a three-layered structure including Mo/Al/Mo.

The source electrodes SE and drain electrodes DE are electrically connected to the sources and drains, respectively, of the TFTs via contact holes formed in the interlayer dielectric film II.

As shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the video signal lines DL run in the Y direction, and are arranged in the X direction. The video signal lines DL are connected to a video signal line driver XDR.

In this embodiment, as shown in FIG. 3, the power supply lines PSL run in the Y direction, and are arranged in the X direction.

The electrodes E2 are connected to the power supply lines PSL. Each electrode E2 is used as the other electrode of the capacitor C.

The source electrodes SE, drain electrodes DE, video signal lines DL, power supply lines PSL, and electrodes E2 are covered with a passivation film PS shown in FIG. 2. The passivation film PS is made of, e.g., SiNx.

On the passivation film PS, as shown in FIG. 2, light-transmitting first electrodes PE as front electrodes are arranged away from each other. Each first electrode PE is a pixel electrode and, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, connected to the drain electrode DE of the switch SW1 via a through-hole formed in the passivation film PS.

In this embodiment, the first electrodes PE are anodes. As the material of the first electrodes PE, it is possible to use, e.g., a transparent conductive oxide such as indium tin oxide (ITO).

A partition insulating layer PI shown in FIG. 2 is further formed on the passivation film PS. In the partition insulating layer PI, through-holes are formed at positions corresponding to the first electrodes PE, or slits are formed at positions corresponding to the columns or rows formed by the first electrodes PE. In this embodiment, as an example, through-holes are formed at those positions of the partition insulating layer PI which correspond to the first electrodes PE.

The partition insulating layer PI is, e.g., an organic insulating layer. The partition insulating layer PI can be formed by using, e.g., photolithography.

On each first electrode PE, an organic layer ORG including an emission layer is formed. The emission layer is, e.g., a thin film containing a luminescent organic compound which emits red, green, or blue light. The organic layer ORG may further include a hole transporting layer, hole injection layer, hole blocking layer, electron transporting layer, and electron injection layer, in addition to the emission layer.

The partition insulating layer PI and organic layers ORG are covered with a second electrode CE as a back electrode. The second electrode CE is a common electrode connected between the pixels PX, and is a light-reflecting cathode in this embodiment. The second electrode CE is, e.g., electrically connected to electrode interconnections (not shown) formed on the layer on which the video signal lines DL are formed via contact holes formed in the passivation film PS and partition insulating layer PI. Each organic EL element OLED is made up of the first electrode PE, organic layer ORG, and second electrode CE.

Each pixel PX includes the organic EL element OLED and a pixel circuit. In this embodiment, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the pixel circuit includes the drive control element DR, output control switch SW1, video signal supply control switch SW2, diode-connecting switch SW3, and capacitor C. In this embodiment as described above, the drive control element DR and the switches SW1 to SW3 are p-channel TFTs. Also, in this embodiment, the video signal supply control switch SW2 and diode-connecting switch SW3 form a switch group which switches the connection state of the drain of the drive control element DR, the video signal line DL, and the gate of the drive control element DR between a first state in which they are connected to one another and a second state in which they are disconnected from one another.

The drive control element DR, output control switch SW1, and organic EL element OLED are connected in series in this order between first and second power supply terminals ND1 and ND2. In this embodiment, the first power supply terminal ND1 is a high-potential power supply terminal, and the second power supply terminal ND2 is a low-potential power supply terminal.

The gate of the output control switch SW1 is connected to the scan signal line SL1. The video signal supply control switch SW2 is connected between the video signal line DL and the drain of the drive control element DR, and the gate of the video signal supply control switch SW2 is connected to the scan signal line SL2. The diode-connecting switch SW3 is connected between the drain and gate of the drive control element DR, and the gate of the diode-connecting switch SW3 is connected to the scan signal line SL2. The capacitor C is connected between the gate of the drive control element DR and a constant-potential terminal ND1′.

To display an image on this organic EL display, the scan signal lines SL1 and SL2, for example, are driven in a line-sequential manner. In a write period during which a video signal is to be written in a certain pixel PX, the scan signal line driver YDR first outputs a scan signal for opening the switch SW1 as a voltage signal to the scan signal line SL1 to which the pixel PX is connected, and outputs a scan signal for closing the switches SW2 and SW3 as a voltage signal to the scan signal line SL2 to which the pixel PX is connected. In this state, the video signal line driver XDR outputs a video signal as a current signal to the video signal line DL to which the pixel PX is connected, thereby setting the gate-to-source voltage of the drive control element DR at a magnitude corresponding to the video signal. After that, the scan signal line driver YDR outputs a scan signal for opening the switches SW2 and SW3 as a voltage signal to the scan signal line SL2 to which the pixel PX is connected, and outputs a scan signal for closing the switch SW1 as a voltage signal to the scan signal line SL1 to which the pixel PX is connected.

In an effective display period during which the switch SW1 is closed, a drive current with a magnitude corresponding to the gate-to-source voltage of the drive control element DR flows through the organic EL element OLED. The organic EL element OLED emits light at luminance corresponding to the magnitude of the drive current.

As described previously, a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail may form in an active matrix display in which a current signal is written as a video signal in a pixel circuit. The present inventor made a thorough examination on the reason of this phenomenon, and has found the following fact.

Assume, for example, that the source and drain of the drive control element DR shortcircuit in the pixel PX connected to the scan signal lines SL1 and SL2 on the Mth row and to the video signal line DL in the Nth column. In this case, the organic EL element OLED of the pixel PX always emits light at maximum luminance during the effective display period. Therefore, the pixel PX is viewed as a luminous dot.

Also, in this case, in the write period of the pixel PX, the video signal line driver XDR sets the video signal line DL in the Nth column at an electric potential substantially equal to that of the first power supply terminal ND1. That is, the electric potential of the video signal line DL in the Nth column rises excessively. Since the line capacitance of the video signal line DL is not negligibly small, write periods for, e.g., a few ten rows is necessary before the electric potential of the video signal line DL in the Nth row returns to an appropriate range.

Accordingly, of the pixels PX connected to the video signal line DL in the Nth column, signals smaller than the output from the video signal line driver XDR are written in a few ten pixels from the (M+1)th row. As a consequence, the luminance of each of these pixels PX becomes lower than the intended luminance. Therefore, these pixels PX are viewed as a dark line.

For the reason as described above, if the source and drain of the drive control element DR shortcircuit, a luminous dot with a dark line-like tail forms. Note that as is apparent from the above explanation, the luminance of the dark line is not constant, but normally rises from the end on the luminous dot side to the other end.

A luminous dot with a luminous line-like tail forms when, for example, the source and drain of the output control switch SW1 shortcircuit in the pixel PX connected to the scan signal lines SL1 and SL2 on the Mth row and to the video signal line DL in the Nth column.

That is, in this case, in the write period of the pixel PX, the video signal line driver XDR sets the video signal line DL in the Nth column at an electric potential lower than that of the second power supply terminal ND2. In the pixel PX, therefore, the gate potential of the drive control element DR falls extremely. Accordingly, the organic EL element OLED of the pixel PX always emits light at maximum luminance in the effective display period. As a consequence, the pixel PX is viewed as a luminous dot.

Also, in this case, in the write period of the pixel PX, the video signal line DL in the Nth column is set at an excessively low electric potential. Since the line capacitance of the video signal line DL is not negligibly small, a write period for, e.g., a few ten rows is necessary before the electric potential of the video signal line DL in the Nth row returns to an appropriate range.

Accordingly, of the pixels PX connected to the video signal line DL in the Nth column, signals larger than the output from the video signal line driver XDR are written in a few ten pixels from the (M+1)th row. As a consequence, the luminance of each of these pixels PX becomes higher than the intended luminance. Therefore, these pixels PX are viewed as a luminous line.

For the reason as described above, if the source and drain of the output control switch SW1 shortcircuit, a luminous dot with a luminous line-like tail forms. Note that as is evident from the above explanation, the luminance of the luminous line is not constant, but normally decreases from the end on the luminous dot side to the other end.

From the above fact, the present inventor has found that the appearance of a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail in an image can be prevented by the use of the following method.

That is, the structure shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 is formed first by the conventional method. Then, a repair process is performed.

In this repair process, a pixel which may be viewed as a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail is first selected from the pixels PX. Note that the pixel selected herein is a pixel PX corresponding to a luminous dot and is not a pixel PX corresponding to a luminous line or dark line. Note also that the luminous dot noted herein is exclusively a dot having a tail in the Y direction.

Then, in the selected pixel PX, both a first conductive path connecting the first electrode CE of the organic EL element OLED to the first power supply terminal ND1 and a second conductive path connecting the first conductive path to the video signal line DL are broken. The first conductive path is broken at, e.g., a portion which connects the output control switch SW1 and the first electrode PE of the organic EL element OLED. Also, the second conductive path is broken at, e.g., a portion which connects the video signal supply control switch SW2 and video signal line DL. Also, the first and second conductive paths are broken by irradiating the semiconductor layers SC of these paths with a laser beam.

When the first conductive path is broken in the selected pixel PX, the organic EL element OLED included in the pixel PX does not emit light in the effective display period. Therefore, the pixel PX is not viewed as a luminous dot.

Also, when the second conductive path is broken in the selected pixel PX, the electric potential of the video signal line DL to which the pixel PX is connected is not affected by the electric potential of the first or second power supply terminal ND1 or ND2 in the write period of the pixel PX. Accordingly, no luminous line or dark line is produced by the influence of the pixel PX.

When the repair described previously is performed, therefore, it is possible to prevent the appearance of a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail in an image.

This repair leaves traces explained below in the pixel PX. These traces will be described with reference to FIG. 4.

FIG. 4 is a plan view schematically showing a structure after the pixel shown in FIG. 3 is repaired.

In this embodiment as described above, a pixel PX which may be viewed as a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail is selected, and both the first and second conductive paths are broken in the pixel PX. Therefore, in the completed organic EL display, some pixels PX include two broken portions.

For example, the structure shown in FIG. 4 is obtained when the first conductive path is broken at a portion which connects the output control switch SW1 and the first electrode PE of the organic EL element OLED, and the second conductive path is broken at a portion which connects the video signal supply control switch SW2 and video signal line DL. Note that when the semiconductor layer SC is crystalline like polysilicon and each path is to be broken at the position of the semiconductor layer SC, a phase change from crystalline to amorphous can be produced by irradiating the semiconductor layer SC with a laser beam. In this case, even if the semiconductor layer SC is physically incompletely broken by irradiation with the laser beam, its electric resistance rises significantly, so the electrical disconnection cannot be insufficient.

Although the organic EL display using the arrangement shown in FIG. 1 as the pixel PX is explained above, another arrangement may be used as the pixel PX. For example, it is possible to connect the video signal supply control switch SW2 and diode-connecting switch SW3 in series in this order between the video signal line DL and the drain of the drive control element DR, and connect the drain of the diode-connecting switch SW3 to the gate of the drive control element DR. Alternatively, the diode-connecting switch SW3 may be connected not between the drain and gate of the drive control element DR, but between the gate of the drive control element DR and the video signal line DL. Alternatively, the switch group may be made up of three or more switches, instead of the two switches, i.e., the video signal supply control switch SW2 and diode-connecting switch SW3.

FIG. 5 is an equivalent circuit diagram of a pixel included in a display according to a modification. FIG. 6 is a plan view schematically showing an example of a structure usable as the pixel of the display according to the modification. Note that FIG. 6 illustrates the structure of the pixel viewed from the display surface side.

A pixel PX shown in FIGS. 5 and 6 has the same structure as the pixel PX shown in FIGS. 1 and 3 except that not a video signal supply control switch SW2 but video signal supply control switches SW2 a and SW2 b are connected in series in this order between a video signal line DL and the drain of a drive control element DR. That is, a switch group is made up of the video signal supply control switches SW2 a and SW2 b and a diode-connecting switch SW3, instead of the video signal supply control switch SW2 and diode-connecting switch SW3. In this way, the switch group may be made up of three or more switches.

When the structure shown in FIGS. 5 and 6 is used as the pixel PX, the repair described above may be performed in the following manner. This repair will be explained below with reference to FIGS. 7 and 8.

FIG. 7 is a plan view schematically showing an example of a structure after the pixel shown in FIG. 6 is repaired. FIG. 8 is a plan view schematically showing another example of the structure after the pixel shown in FIG. 6 is repaired.

Even when the structure shown in FIGS. 5 and 6 is used as the pixel PX, a pixel PX which may be viewed as a luminous dot with a luminous or dark line-like tail is selected in the same manner as above. Then, both first and second conductive paths are broken in the pixel PX.

The second conductive path can be broken at, e.g., a portion connecting the video signal supply control switch SW2 a and video signal line DL. In this case, if the first conductive path is broken at a portion connecting an output control switch SW1 and a first electrode PE of an organic EL element OLED, the structure shown in FIG. 7 is obtained.

The second conductive path may be broken at a portion connecting the video signal supply control switches SW2 a and SW2 b. In this case, if the first conductive path is broken at the portion connecting the output control switch SW1 and the first electrode PE of the organic EL element OLED, the structure shown in FIG. 8 is obtained.

The organic EL display described above uses an arrangement in which the first and second conductive paths do not overlap any other interconnections or electrodes in their broken portions when viewed in a direction perpendicular to the main surface of a substrate SUB. This makes it possible to protect the other interconnections or electrodes from being damaged by laser beam irradiation for breaking the first and second conductive paths. Especially when the distance between the broken portions and the interconnections or electrodes other than the first and second conductive paths is about 2 μm or more when viewed in the direction perpendicular to the main surface of the substrate SUB, it is readily possible to protect the other interconnections or electrodes from being damaged by laser beam irradiation for breaking the first and second conductive paths.

Additional advantages and modifications will readily occur to those skilled in the art. Therefore, the invention in its broader aspects is not limited to the specific details and representative embodiments shown and described herein. Accordingly, various modifications may be made without departing from the spirit or scope of the general inventive concept as defined by the appended claims and their equivalents.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification345/76, 345/204, 345/212, 345/211
International ClassificationG09G3/30
Cooperative ClassificationG09G2300/0861, G09G3/325, G09G2330/10, H01L2251/568, G09G2300/0842, G09G3/006, H01L27/3276
European ClassificationG09G3/32A8C2S
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Effective date: 20090525
Owner name: TOSHIBA MOBILE DISPLAY CO., LTD., JAPAN
Free format text: CHANGE OF NAME;ASSIGNOR:TOSHIBA MATSUSHITA DISPLAY TECHNOLOGY CO., LTD.;REEL/FRAME:028339/0273